“Hiking” Clothes: Not Just for the Outdoors

It’s the worst travel secret to have, and today I admit to the world that I am a horrendous packer. I wait until the last possible second and struggle to figure out what I’ll actually wear. I’m always too hot or too cold, hate carrying things, and usually end up overpacking. As a result, my luggage is always overweight and the fees mean one less cool thing to do.

Last month, I had a lightbulb moment during the #FYPx Expedition that has solved my packing problems. Columbia Sportswear and REI helped outfit the team and I for our journey, and that’s when I realized that “outdoor” clothing is so much more! Moisture wicking, lightweight, and high tech fabrics take out all the guesswork, and it’s the perfect thing to bring when you’re on a global adventure.

We were in San Francisco and Yosemite during a record smashing heat wave, the kind of weather that was last experienced 46 years ago. The days were blistering and sweaty, but by night time we were FREEZING. Even moving into a valley meant a change in temperature, but not once did I agonize. I was pleasantly surprised at how effective one shirt could be at keeping me comfortable, and how my lightweight layers were an easy solution to my needs.

One bonus secret from REI was about the power of wool socks and a good fitting shoe. Socks should be pulled up with no sag around your toes and laces should be snug from the bottom up, meaning careful adjustments every time you put them on. I’m rough on my feet, but not once did they ache or have blisters after a day of journeying.

I don’t know why I thought this stuff was *exclusively* for the outdoors, like for the kind of person that might go on marathon camping trips where every ounce counts, or a hiker that needs their clothing to perform in any weather. Travel clothes also require the same things, and they both have a lot of moving around required. Literally.

Don’t fear changing up your travel game because of style! I was worried about looking kinda goofy or weird, but was surprised yet again to see some of the great options in active wear available. I def won’t be shy about telling someone a great sweater is from REI, or that my fun sneakers are from Columbia Sportswear. I’m so sold on changing how I pack and my next trip will mean one less scramble.

Puffy vest=yes. (Photo by Victoria Ramos)

Much thanks to my #FindYourPark friends featured here!
Check them out:
Victoria Ramos, Faith Briggs, Erin O’Grady, Mario Villanueva,
Edgar Woo, and Geoff Livingston

What are some of your packing trips, or essential items of clothing for travel? Did you already know the secrets of active wear? Let us know in the comments!


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